Mavis Joy Waters, February 15th, 1929 to June 4th, 2023


Much loved mother of three children and two grandchildren, died peacefully at the age of 94 at St. Joseph’s Health Centre in Toronto. Mavis was born in Gillingham, Kent in England to Fred and Doris Waters. The family moved to South Shields in County Durham during WWII. As a young person, Mavis won a place to study History at Oxford University and eventually earned her degree there, a remarkable achievement for a woman with a working class background at the time. Mavis became a world traveller, who lived and worked in Australia and Indonesia, as well as South Africa where she joined the racial justice movement. During this period she and her then husband started a family and began to raise them. Family held a central place in Mavis’ life. She always wanted three children and was a warm and devoted mother; she was also thrilled to be a grandmother when that time came. In mid-life, Mavis earned a PhD in Oral History from Essex University and, having immigrated with the family to Canada in 1966, worked at York University in the Social Science department, focusing on labour history, women’s studies and oral histories. Mavis loved books, literature, beauty, good conversation, travel and the arts. Her house was a welcoming place for visitors, especially those far from home. She was a gracious, kind and inclusive person who wished for and worked for a better world for all to live in. Mavis will be lovingly remembered by her children, Ruth, Eve and Peter (Marie-France) and her grandchildren Robin and Patrick.

Memorial and celebration of life:

Sunday July 2nd, 2:30 to 4:30pm,

Heliconian Club Hall, 35 Hazelton Avenue, Toronto.


In lieu of flowers, please consider a donation in memory of Mavis to Canadian Feed the Children




July 02, 2023
Sunday July 2nd, 2:30 to 4:30pm, Heliconian Club Hall, 35 Hazelton Avenue, Toronto.

Memorial and celebration of life


June 14, 2023
St. James Crematorium